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Glossary of Educational Terms


Act
The final, formal product of a legislative (law-making) body that requires the signature of the president or governor to make it into law.   It may also become law by a legislature overriding a veto.

Amendment
A change or the process of changing. In law, a change, revision, or improvement to a legislative bill, law, constitution, etc. Proposed amendments to the US Constitution become law after ¾ of the state legislatures or conventions in ¾ of the states ratify them.

Appropriation
Money set aside or assigned for a particular purpose.

Authorization
The act of giving authority or legal power; establishment by authority.

Bill
A draft of a proposed law presented for approval to a legislative body.  Bills introduced in the House of Representatives start with "H.R." and those in the Senate begin with "S."  Once they are enacted into law, they are given a "P.L." or Public Law number.

Civil Rights
Equal treatment of all people with respect to protection of the law and to the enjoyment of life, liberty, and property.

Cold War
Sharp diplomatic and economic conflict between nations, without actual warfare, particularly the conflict between the United States and its allies and the Communist Bloc of nations led by the Soviet Union and China from the end of World War II until the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989.

Congress
The legislature of the United States, consisting of the Senate and the House of Representatives. The term is sometimes used to designate the lower house, the House of Representatives.

Congressman/congresswoman/representative
A member of Congress, especially of the House of Representatives.

Cotulla, Texas
A small town in South Texas where Lyndon Johnson taught Hispanic students at the Welhausen School in 1928-29.

Democracy
Government by the people; a form of government in which the supreme power is retained and exercised by the people.

Desegregation/integration
Ending the practice of separating the races. (see segregation).

Discriminate/discrimination
To make distinctions in treatment; show partiality or prejudice.

Elementary Education
In the United States, education from kindergarten through grades 5 or 6.

Enactment
The passing of a bill or law, etc.

Equal Rights
See Civil Rights.

Great Society
A wide range of social programs that President Johnson envisioned as improving the quality of life in the United States. The primary issues were health care, poverty relief, education, the arts and culture, the cities, natural beauty and preservation, crime prevention and civil rights.

Higher Education 
In the United States, education after grade 12, including education in 4-year colleges and universities, 2-year colleges, and some trade schools.

Impacted Areas
Impacted areas of the country are affected by presence of federal activities, usually defense or military installations. In education, the federal impact aid program was established to compensate school districts for the expense of educating the children of military/federal personnel and the lost property-tax revenue resulting from the presence of tax-exempt federal property.  

Impoverished
Reduced to poverty or made poor.

Parochial School
A primary or secondary school supported by a religious organization.

Public Broadcasting System (PBS)  
Non-commercial radio and television that produces and distributes news, talk and entertainment programming.  It is a privately supported, not-for-profit, membership organization.

Secondary Education
In the United States, education for grades 6 or 7 through 12.

Segregated
Set apart; isolated from the main part or group (as in racial groups, social facilities).

Senator
A member of the upper house of the U.S. Congress or of some state legislatures. 

Sputnik
The first artificial satellite in outer space; launched by the Soviet Union on October 5, 1957.

Veto
The vested power or constitutional right of one branch or department of government to refuse approval of measures proposed by another department, especially the power of the President to reject a bill passed by the legislature and thus prevent or delay its enactment into law.

Vocational Education
Instruction intended to equip persons for industrial or commercial occupations. It may be obtained either formally in high schools, trade schools or technical secondary schools, or on-the-job training programs.

Work-study
Combining an academic program with paid employment in which students gain practical experience in the workplace.


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